The Best iPad Pro Keyboard Cases

The iPad Pro makes the best argument yet for an iPad as a laptop substitute and power-user productivity tool. You’ll get a lot more out of it with a real keyboard to type on. After testing every keyboard case we could get our hands on over the past year—for all three iPad Pro sizes—we haven’t yet found the perfect one. (You might be better off with a separate Bluetooth keyboard.) But we think Apple’s own Smart Keyboard for 10.5-inch iPad Pro, Smart Keyboard for 12.9-inch iPad Pro, and Smart Keyboard for 9.7-inch iPad Pro are the best currently available, because each version offers a pretty good typing experience in a slim and relatively light package that’s easy to put on and take off.

The Best iPad Pro Keyboard Cases

The 12.9-inch iPad Pro is quite a bit bigger and heavier than Apple’s other tablets, and adding a bulky keyboard case can make it a bit awkward to hold. But if you want a keyboard case (say, for typing on your lap), rather than a separate keyboard, Apple’s own Smart Keyboard for 12.9-inch iPad Pro is still the best available. The Smart Keyboard adds significantly less weight and bulk than other options and is easy to put on and take off thanks to a Smart Cover-like magnetic hinge that—via the Pro’s magnetic Smart Connector—also powers the keyboard and connects it directly to the iPad (no Bluetooth required). Its keys aren’t the best we’ve tested, and you’ll need to buy a back case for all-over protection—we recommend Khomo’s Companion Cover or Urban Armor Gear’s Metropolis—but it’s still the keyboard case we keep using, two years after the iPad Pro debuted.

The 10.5-inch iPad Pro has its own version of the Smart Keyboard, and the Smart Keyboard for 10.5-inch iPad Pro is our pick for the smaller Pro. The 10.5-inch Smart Keyboard has the same design and keys as the 12.9-inch version in a smaller package. As a result, the keys are a little smaller and closer together, but the keyboard is still comfortable to use and nothing’s in the wrong place. The 10.5-inch Smart Keyboard is more appealing than other options because it weighs just 8.4 ounces, is only a few millimeters thick, and is easy to put on and take off. As with the larger version, you must separately buy a back cover for all-over protection, but the Smart Keyboard is currently your best bet if you must have a keyboard case for the 10.5-inch iPad Pro.

 

Prior to overseeing Wirecutter’s iPad accessory coverage, I coordinated Macworld’s accessory reviews for more than a decade, including years of covering iPad accessories. I also wrote and regularly updated Macworld’s guide to the best iPad keyboards. Between that guide and Wirecutter guides, I’ve tested every iPad keyboard from major brands, as well as dozens of models from minor brands and niche vendors—it’s a good bet that I’ve tested more iPad keyboards than anyone.

Personally, I’m a touch typist and a bit of a keyboard geek, so I have little patience for bad keys and non-standard layouts. I use an iPad with a keyboard daily at home and on the road, so if I’m happy with a particular keyboard case, there’s a good chance you will be, too.

We also surveyed roughly 400 Wirecutter readers for their preferences for keyboard-case features and design.

 

You should get a keyboard case only if you need to use a physical keyboard regularly and you want one with you most of the time. Even then, you should at least consider a standalone Bluetooth keyboard instead.

In addition, while the 12.9-inch iPad Pro’s larger footprint means that it can accommodate a nearly full-size keyboard, most models made for the 10.5-inch and 9.7-inch iPad Pro models use smaller-than-normal keys and cramped layouts that make typing inferior to the experience you’ll get with a full-size keyboard. Even worse, many 10-5-inch and 9.7-inch iPad Pro keyboards put standard keys in nonstandard locations or overlay their functions on other keys (requiring you to press fn to access the overlays), which makes typing frustrating, especially for touch typists. Some models even eliminate particular keys altogether.

You should get an iPad keyboard case only if you need to use a physical keyboard regularly and you want one with you most of the time. Even then, you should at least consider a standalone Bluetooth keyboard instead. If you’ll be doing much of your typing on a desk, table, or other flat surface, a separate keyboard will give you a much better experience: The keyboard itself will be larger with better keys; you can create a much more ergonomic setup by elevating the iPad while putting the keyboard at the ideal height for typing; when you don’t need the keyboard, you can leave it behind to travel light; you can continue to use your favorite case; and if you ever upgrade your iPad, you won’t have to buy a new keyboard case to fit it. (The biggest downside is that it’s tough to use a separate keyboard and an iPad stand on your lap.)

 

10.5 Inch Ipad Pro Case

IPad Pro 10.5 Inch 2017 Case, Ztotop Premium Leather Business Slim Folding Stand Folio Cover for New Apple Tablet with Auto Wake / Sleep and Document Card Slots, Multiple Viewing Angles,Brown
  • Premium Graded Material - Excellent workmanship with premium synthetic leather exterior and soft...
  • Multi-functional Features- Built in leather hand strap, pencil holder and organizer pocket.
  • Auto Wake & Sleep Feature - Magnetic smart cover supports auto wake & sleep function.
  • IMultiple slots able to set up multiple horizontal stand angles for watching movie or typing.
  • PLEASE NOTE - Exclusively designed for Apple iPad 10.5 inch 2017 Case ( A1701/A1709 ) precise cut-outs,...

12.9 Inch Ipad Pro Case

IPad Pro 12.9 Inch 2017 / 2015 Case, Ztotop Premium Leather Slim Folding Stand Folio Cover for New Apple Tablet with Auto Wake / Sleep and Document Card Slots, Multiple Viewing Angles,Brown
  • Premium Graded Material - Excellent workmanship with premium synthetic leather exterior and soft...
  • Multi - functional Features- Built in leather hand strap, pencil holder and organizer pocket.
  • Auto Wake & Sleep Feature - Magnetic smart cover supports auto wake & sleep function.
  • Multiple slots able to set up multiple horizontal stand angles for watching movie or typing.
  • PLEASE NOTE - Exclusively designed for Apple iPad Pro 12.9 - inch Case (New 2017 Model) precise cut-outs,...

 

 

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